My Blog

Posts for: December, 2016

By Penny Creek Family and Implant Dentistry
December 24, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: veneers   celebrity smiles  

What's an actor's most important feature? According to Vivica A. Fox, whose most recent big-screen role was in Independence Day: Resurgence, it's what you see right up front.

"On screen, your smile and your eyes are the most inviting things that bring the audience in" she said. "Especially if you play the hot chick."

But like lots of people, Vivica reached a point where she felt her smile needed a little help in order to look its best. That's when she turned to a popular cosmetic dental treatment.

"I got veneers years ago," Ms. Fox told Dear Doctor magazine in a recent interview, "just because I had some gapping that probably only I noticed."

What exactly are dental veneers? Essentially, they are thin shells of lustrous porcelain that are permanently attached to the front surfaces of the teeth. Tough, lifelike and stain-resistant, they can cover up a number of defects in your smile — including stains, chips, cracks, and even minor spacing irregularities like the ones Vivica had.

Veneers have become the treatment of choice for Hollywood celebs — and lots of regular folks too — for many reasons. Unlike some treatments that can take many months, it takes just a few appointments to have veneers placed on your teeth. Because they are custom made just for you, they allow you to decide how bright you want your smile to be: anywhere from a natural pearly hue to a brilliant "Hollywood white." Best of all, they are easy to maintain, and can last for many years with only routine care.

To place traditional veneers, it's necessary to prepare the tooth by removing a small amount (a millimeter or two) of its enamel surface. This keeps it from feeling too big — but it also means the treatment can't be reversed, so once you get veneers, you'll always have them. In certain situations, "no-prep" or minimal-prep veneers, which require little or no removal of tooth enamel, may be an option for some people.

Veneers aren't the only way to create a better smile: Teeth whitening, crowns or orthodontic work may also be an alternative. But for many, veneers are the preferred option. What does Vivica think of hers?

"I love my veneers!" she declared, noting that they have held up well for over a decade.

For more information about veneers, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation.

By Penny Creek Family and Implant Dentistry
December 22, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Botox  

Lines and wrinkles have a way of making us look older than we feel. Luckily, Botox treatments can smooth the skin and make wrinkles botoxless noticeable. Did you know that Botox is now offered by many dentists? Dr. Chad Slocum and Dr. Sara Lundgaard, your Mill Creek, WA dentists, share some information on the treatment and explain why visiting your dentist for Botox treatments is a smart decision.

What is Botox?

Botox is a purified form of the botulinum toxin. During Botox treatment, tiny amounts of the toxin are injected into the facial muscles, preventing nerve impulses from reaching them. When the nerve impulses are blocked, the muscles don't contract when you make facial expressions. Within a few days, the skin over the muscles relaxes, and lines and wrinkles become less much noticeable.

Why should I have Botox?

Botox is a good choice if you want to improve your appearance but don't want to do anything permanent. Since Botox typically lasts three to six months, the results can be easily reversed simply by stopping the injections. Botox is used to treat:

  • Vertical lines between the eyes
  • Horizontal lines on the forehead
  • Crow's feet
  • Lines around the mouth
  • Bands and lines on the neck

Why is my Mill Creek dentist's office the perfect place to receive Botox treatment?

The most important part of Botox treatment is placing the injections at the optimal spots and ensuring that the needle isn't placed too shallowly or too deeply. Since numbing injections are an important part of many dental treatments, your dentist already knows how to precisely position the needle for maximum benefit.

Dentists are particularly well qualified to work with the muscles and nerves that extend from the forehead to the chin, thanks to the extensive training they receive. Many dentists already routinely use Botox to treat patients who suffer from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ). Whether Botox is injected in the jaw, forehead or the lines above the lips, the process is exactly the same.

Would you like to get rid of the lines and wrinkles that age you? Call Dr. Slocum and Dr. Lundgaard, your Mill Creek, WA dentists, at (425) 337-7300 to schedule an appointment. Turn back the years with Botox injections!

By Penny Creek Family and Implant Dentistry
December 09, 2016
Category: Oral Health
Tags: oral health  

There's more to your dental visit than preventing or treating teeth or gum problems. We're also on the lookout for a number of potential soft tissue problems that could occur in or around your mouth.

Here are 4 examples of such problems we can detect and help you manage.

Lumps. Whenever you accidentally bite the inside of your mouth, the wound you create forms a protective layer of hard collagen. Unfortunately, the “callous” can rise higher than the surrounding cheek surface and easily get in the way of your teeth again. With successive bites and more scar tissue you'll soon notice a prominent lump. Although not a health danger, it becomes annoying with each successive bite. We can surgically remove the lump and flatten out the mouth surface.

Canker sores. Known as aphthous ulcers, these round sores with a yellow-gray center and a red “halo” can break out on the inside cheeks, tongue or back of the throat. Unless they don't heal within a couple of weeks or seem to be increasing in frequency, they're nothing to worry about. They can, however, cause a burning or stinging sensation. We can reduce this discomfort and speed healing with over-the-counter ointments or prescription options like topical or injected steroids.

Cracked mouth corners. Also known as perleche (from the French lecher, meaning “to lick”), your mouth corners can become dry and irritated and you may begin licking them to soothe the discomfort. Accumulated saliva can trigger a yeast infection, which can spread to other parts of your mouth. We can usually prevent this by prescribing antifungal ointments, and a steroid ointment to control inflammation.

Mouth rash. Peri-oral dermatitis is a red, scaly rash that appears around the outside of the mouth. Because it's often mistaken for acne or other conditions, it's often treated with topical steroids. This actually suppresses the skin's normal healing effects and can actually make the rash worse. The best way to treat it is to stop using any kind of ointment or cream and use only mild soap to wash the area. We can also prescribe antibiotics to help speed the healing process.

If you would like more information on these and other soft tissue problems, please contact us or schedule an appointment for a consultation. You can also learn more about this topic by reading the Dear Doctor magazine articles “Common Lumps and Bumps in the Mouth,” “Mouth Sores,” and “Cracked Corners of the Mouth.”